Movie Review – Busting Out The Bells (2019 AACTA Awards Short Film Competition)

TL;DR – A film with the right heart, even if it does not all come together.      
Score – 3 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene


Watching a love one slide into dementia where they forget where they are and who they are is a heart-breaking process that I and many others have had to experience. Indeed it is a real shame that more films don’t explore this issue but today we get to look at some that have.

Busting out the Bells tells the story of when parents had to tell their young children Jason (James Bingham) and Kate (Amelia Kelly) that their Grandpa George (Phil Mackenzie) will not be staying with them this year because they have had to put him into a nursing home because he kept forgetting things and getting lost.

Busting Out The Bells. Image Credit: Roz Hammond.
When it hits, it hits hard. Image Credit: Roz Hammond.

There are some moments in the film that hit a bit to close to home to be comfortable as you watch someone forget who their loved ones are. It also totally fits within the story that the kids would try and bust him out of the nursing home. Where it does not quite work is in managing the tone of the film, there are some moments where there is a bit of disconnect between the actors and the mood there are going for.

So while not all of the film works, at its core is a good heart and that comes across in the film. All of this leading to a moment at the end that kicks you in the heat in a way that few things can.    

By Brian MacNamara: You can follow Brian on Twitter Here, when he’s not chatting about Movies and TV, he’ll be talking about International Relations, or the Solar System.

Have you watched Busting Out The Bells?, let us know what you thought in the comments below, feel free to share this review on any of the social medias and you can follow us Here. Check out all our past reviews and articles Here, and have a happy day.

Credits –
All images were created by the cast, crew, and production companies of Busting Out The Bells
Directed by
– Roz Hammond
Written by – Ali Roberts & Roz Hammond
Cinematography by – Daniel Holliday
Edited by – Richard Eames
Production/Distribution Companies – Ali Roberts Studio
– James Bingham, Amelia Kelly, Phil Mackenzie, Talei Howell-Price, Justin Hewitt, Davilia O’Connor, Sally Clune & Michael Ferguson      
Rating – Australia: Around a PG


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